BACKGROUND: It is estimated that around 70% of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus patients (T2DM) have Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). Awareness and education are amongst the major shortcomings of the public health response to the increasing threat of NAFLD. Characterizing the specific NAFLD-related information needs of particular high-risk metabolic communities, for instance, T2DM patients, might aid in the development of evidence-based health promotion strategies, ultimately promoting NAFLD-awareness, treatment adherence and therapeutic success rates. METHODS: Semi-structured interviews with T2DM patients were conducted to gain insight into their awareness of NAFLD, including its relationship with insulin resistance and T2DM. RESULTS: Awareness of NAFLD as a disease entity, as well as its progression to end-stage liver disease or its relationship with other metabolic conditions, including insulin resistance and T2DM was low. Surveillance behaviours were also suboptimal and perceptions on the self-management knowledge and praxis regarding lifestyle intervention components of T2DM treatment seemed detached from those of NAFLD. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings could inform the integration of NAFLD-related content in T2DM health promotion strategies. Rising awareness on NAFLD progression and its relationship with T2DM using culturally and community-relevant constructs might facilitate the development of primary and secondary prevention programmes to promote the adherence to lifestyle interventions by influencing NAFLD threat perceptions.
- Qualitative research
- Risk communication